Charles Stoddard

Charles Stoddard, Top Criminal Attorney in Orange County

Charles Stoddard, Attorney at Law

Charles Stoddard is a long time resident of Orange County, moving here in early 1977 and living in Huntington Beach since 1996. Since completing college and law school, he established himself as a formidable presence in the realm of criminal defense. His career is marked by significant achievements, a dedication to serving his clients, and a steadfast commitment to upholding the principles of justice.

Charles graduated cum laude from the College Honors Program at UCLA, Los Angeles, CA, with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science in 1990. His early interest in law and governance led him to serve as an Intern/Clerk at the York County Commonwealth Attorney’s Office from 1991 to 1993, followed by serving as a Clerk at the Virginia Court of Appeals in Richmond, VA, in 1993. That same year, Charles earned his Juris Doctor Degree from the College of William & Mary Marshall-Wythe School of Law in Williamsburg, VA, where he was also honored as the Virginia Trial Lawyer’s Association Student Advocate of the Year, recognizing his exceptional advocacy skills.

In early 1994, shortly after passing the bar, Charles went to work as a Deputy District Attorney at the Butte County District Attorney’s Office. His commitment to his family, however, led him to leave Butte County and return to Orange County in the fall of 1994. He immediately went to work for a very busy law firm in Orange County, where he practiced criminal defense exclusively for the next IO years and honed his legal expertise, preparing him for his next venture.

In 2004, Charles opened his own practice and founded Paladin Legal Defenders, a law firm dedicated exclusively to criminal defense. This venture underscored his commitment to providing robust legal defense to those accused of crimes and ensuring that justice is accessible to all.

His dedication to the legal profession and community service was recognized in 2012 when he received the West Orange County Bar Association Michael A. Horan Award for Excellence, Commitment, and Dedication in providing legal service to the community.

Charles’s commitment to the highest standards of the legal profession was further acknowledged in 2015 when he was selected as a Member of the Nation’s Top One Percent by the National Association of Distinguished Counsel for demonstrating the highest ideals of the legal profession. This prestigious accolade is reserved for only the top one percent of attorneys in the United States.

Additionally, since 2015, Charles has been recognized as a Member of the American Institute of Criminal Law Attorneys, being named among the best criminal defense attorneys in the State of California. This selection highlights his exceptional performance and client satisfaction in the field of criminal law.

Charles is a courtroom lawyer, not an office lawyer. He has been in court nearly every day for the past 30 years, defending those accused of committing crimes, ensuring they receive the best defense possible. He has conducted over 100 jury trials for clients in his career and negotiated favorable outcomes for hundreds more. His career is a testament to his unwavering dedication to justice, his exceptional legal skills, and his commitment to serving his community.



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